It’s hardly an argument that Western movies produced in the 1960s are the best of all time. From The Good, the Bad and the Ugly to Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, the unforgettable performances were only matched by iconic guns creating classic movies that would live forever. Since the height of popularity in the 1960s, Westerns have spurred a whole shooting culture called Single Action Shooting Society who dress and shoot like cowboys.
We’ve decided to take a look back and some of our favorites and bring you a list of the most memorable Western guns.
*Word of warning: spoilers ahead.
Colt SA Army
The Colt SA Army is the most ubiquitous and iconic gun of the Western genre — this is the standard six-shooter that every cowboy wears on his hip. Chambered in .45 Colt you can find these guns scattered throughout the great Westerns. Pike, Dutch, and Tector along with a large swath of the Mexican army use one in The Wild Bunch. Practically the whole cast of Once Upon a Time in the West has a Colt SA Army in their hands at one point.
However, the most famous scene and use of the Colt Single Action Army comes to us from “The Man with No Name” in A Fistful of Dollars when Clint Eastwood single-handedly takes out four men with his Colt SA Army by fanning the hammer. It should be noted that Eastwood was actually using a Uberti replica, a nod to the Italian heritage of director Sergio Leone.
If you’re interested in owning your own Colt CA Army check out the wide selection we have available in the Guns.com Vault by clicking the button below.
What the Colt SA Army is to the handguns the Winchester Model 1892 is to rifles. Whether it’s Ramon shooting at the Baxters in A Fistful of Dollars or Pompey holding the fort down with the Model 1892 in The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, this rifle is well placed in many Western movies.
In Once Upon a Time in the West, the Model 1892 appears as Stoney’s Mare’s Leg rifle. The Mare’s Leg shortened rifle was introduced in the 1950s by Steve McQueen in a series called Trackdown but is seen in many other movies. The unique shorty rifle has a special place in Westerns — replicated by the likes of Henry and Uberti. One of the more famous scenes of the gun in action occurs when Harmonica arrives in town in Once Upon a Time in the West.
You can find many different models of the Winchester Model 1892 on Guns.com by clicking the button below.
Shotguns may not be as glorified as six-shooters in Westerns, but they still play a large part. Nearly all the shotguns you’ll find in Westerns are 12-gauge side-by-sides. While it’s more difficult to place the manufacturer of these shotguns you’ll notice many have been chopped down to conceal better, one of the more famous instances of the short-barreled shotgun is Mississippi’s gun in the movie El Dorado.
Looking for your own side-by-side shotgun? Click the button below to see all the options Guns.com has to offer.
Although Colt only made about 500 Gatling “Battery Guns” for U.S. customers between 1866 and 1907, making them fairly rare, Hollywood made sure that they appeared in dozens of Westerns ranging from The War Wagon to Rooster Cogburn and even to more modern films set in the Old West such as the remakes of 3:10 to Yuma and The Magnificent Seven.
Heck, there was even a 1968 Spaghetti Western entitled Gatling Gun, which uses one of these early devices is the central MacGuffin. The film is a cult classic that was a hit on the drive-in circuit.
For those wanting to get their crank gun itch scratched, we happen to have a .45-70-caliber Colt M1877 Bulldog Gatling, with a 1,200 rpm rate of fire, in stock.
This superb 1877 Colt Bulldog Gatling gun reissue, currently available in the Guns.com Outlet program, is looking for a forever home and is ready to run .45-70 as fast as you can turn a crank.
The golden age of Westerns provided us with some great performances and iconic gun duels. Some of these movies have even spurred their own SASS style events, like the Wild Bunch, where the participants are required to only shoot guns that were used in the movie. While the greatest Westerns may very well be behind us, their performances and guns will live on forever.
Do you want to shoot 3-Gun competition but do not have thousands to spend on a handgun? Check out my Springfield Armory XD-M Elite. It will not break your bank account but offers quality, reliability, and versatility in a match-ready package.
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